Harley-Davidson: Internationalization in the Trump Era
Guillotin, B., & Kwon, S. (2018). Harley-Davidson: Internationalization in the Trump Era. Ivey Publishing (London, ON, Canada) [Case Study]
Posted: 11 Jan 2019 Last revised: 29 May 2019
Date Written: June 1, 2018
“We’re proud of you! Made in America: Harley-Davidson,” President Donald J. Trump praised the motorcycle company’s executives and union leaders on February 2, 2017. When he left the meeting at the White House that day, Matthew S. Levatich, the chief executive officer (CEO) of Harley-Davidson Inc. (Harley-Davidson), was impressed by the Trump administration. The meeting had occurred less than two weeks after Trump had released his America First foreign policy, which could help or hurt the struggling but iconic company that had become a symbol of American ideals and U.S. manufacturing know-how.
“The big opportunity for Harley-Davidson, growth-wise, is in Asia, and a lot of the work with the Trans-Pacific Partnership addresses some of the barriers that are in the way of our growth in Asia,” Levatich had said in a television appearance in April 2016.[iii] However, many things had changed since then, and in May 2017, Levatich had to ascertain whether to pursue that big Asian opportunity.
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